A professional resource for the design curious

Get the latest design news direct to your inbox!

Ending Waste, One Bottle At a Time

Every day around a million plastic water bottles end up in Australian landfills — a truly staggering thought, which is even more shocking when you consider that bottled water costs around 2,000 times more than tap water, with the O Initiative, Zip are encouraging people to start using public water fountains.


October 18th, 2017

Zip Water, a company that has always been passionate about water and driven by sustainability, knows how ridiculous this obsession with plastic is. Their ‘The O Initiative’, driven by a commitment to reduce the amount of plastic that ends up in landfill, is proof of this.

Zip have partnered with Gretha Oost for The O Initiative, which encourages people to start using public water fountains. Zip provided the filtration systems for the fountains, to ensure that this free, publicly available water is also pure and clean.

These are not simply functional fountains, either. Oost, the founder of the innovative start-up, engaged local artist Georgie Flaircloth to create different designs for water fountains around Melbourne. Hand-painted scenes that depict the wider Almaville/St Kilda East community have been added to the fountains, including the Hank Marvin Markets, family picnics with children playing, and depictions of the often marginalised transgender and multicultural minorities.

“The O Initiative is based on the idea that, through art, we can create a positive association with drinking tap water from public fountains and reduce plastic waste associated with drinking bottled water,” Oost said.

With innovation in the water industry at the heart of the Zip mission, teaming up with Oost was a no-brainer.

“We’re very excited to be involved with The O Initiative and to be helping Gretha to engage the community through design and technology in her efforts to promote drinking filtered tap water,” says Zip CEO, John Doumani.

If you live in Melbourne and frequent the Hank Marvin Markets at Alma Park, you can fill your water bottle up for free at one of the fountains. Next stop for The O Initiative? Noosa and the Mornington Peninsula region.

INDESIGN is on instagram

Follow @indesignlive

The Indesign Collection

A searchable and comprehensive guide for specifying leading products and their suppliers

Indesign Our Partners

Keep up to date with the latest and greatest from our industry BFF's!

Related Stories

While you were sleeping

The internet never sleeps! Here's the stuff you might have missed